Pest Control Adelaide

Adelaide at night

Pest Control Adelaide – Adelaide is the driest capital city in Australia and the pest problems are different to the East coast states… but there are still plenty of pest problems!  As such, there is still the need for regular pest treatments and termites are still the number one concern for homeowners, so termites inspections and treatments are a must. Here’s all you need to know about pest control and the key pests in Adelaide.

Pest Control Adelaide - Popular pest treatments

A “pest spray” or general pest control treatment is generally good to keep spiders and most insect pests at bay for at least 6 months. If you time the treatment at the start of spring, it will probably last the whole of the pest season.

Although people call this general pest treatment a “pest spray”, it’s more than that. Not only does it involve spraying the exterior perimeter of the building, but it also includes treating the roof void and sub-floor (if you have one) with insecticide dust. Many modern treatments don’t spray inside unless there’s a specific reason – after all the pests are normally outside trying to get in. Some treatments will also include the use of cockroach baits.

However, if you suffer from ongoing ant problems of millipede invasions, a specialist treatment at the appropriate time of the year will give the best results. Rat and mouse problems will also require a specialist rodent treatment.

For pest control Adelaide, many customers combine their pest treatment with their annual termite inspection as you can often get a good discount.


Governments and building authorities strongly recommend a professional termite inspection for Adelaide homeowners, at least annually. Not only will the termite inspector detect whether termites are active on your property (or worse still in your house!), but they will also spot termite damage and any construction faults or environmental conditions around your property that will make your home more likely to suffer from a termite attack.

Make sure you choose a termite professional you can trust. To give you an idea of how long a termite inspection should take, a standard 4-bedroom home on a concrete slab should take at least 1.5 hours. But for homes with a sub-floor or on a larger block, it can take a lot longer to complete the inspection.

Termite inspectors will often use a range of termite detection equipment, including moisture meters, motion detectors and thermal imaging cameras.

Termite inspections are really a “health check” on your home, but to actually prevent termites attacking your home its necessary to have a termite treatment to install a termite protection system.

To protect homes from termite attack, a termite protection system needs to be installed around (and under) the building.

Although all new buildings should have termite protection incorporated into the construction during the build, this is often insufficient to completely prevent a termite attack. However, older buildings often have insufficient protection and even with new buildings, often changes to the landscaping and additional renovations can allow termites to get around any termite protection.

As such, it is industry best practice for all homes to have either a soil treatment or termite baiting system installed to prevent concealed termite attack. Termite baiting systems are very popular in Adelaide as the avoid the need to spray lots of chemicals into the soil – they are the environmentally smart option.

The type of termite treatment will depend on the situation at the property and the construction of the building. For concrete slab homes, in most cases only the exterior of the building will need to be treated. However, if the home is built on piers (creating a sub-floor area), the construction elements under the house will also need to have a termite treatment installed. For many of the old homes in Adelaide, it is necessary to cut traps in the floor in order to gain access to the sub-floor.

Find a Pest Control Company in Adelaide

There are a large number of pest control companies in Adelaide – small family businesses, medium sized companies and multi-nationals. Whether you want your local pest professional or want a larger company to help you out, there are lots of options to choose from.

It is important to choose an experienced pest professional you can trust. Always check to make sure they are licensed and insured to carry out the work being requested.

If you’re looking for a pest control company near you, click on our pest control company locator below to find pest companies providing the services you are looking for in your area.

Key Pests in Adelaide

Ants are one of the key pests annoying homeowners and businesses in Adelaide. “Black ants” are common home invaders and the main species is the white-footed ant.

Outdoors big-headed ants (coastal brown ants) can cause a problem in pavers (and occasionally invade homes), Argentine ants can also develop into large sprawling nests. Both coastal brown ants and Argentine ants can find their way inside looking for food and moisture. In the lawn, green-head ants, with their painful and itchy bites can cause problems.

Professional pest managers will generally use a combination of products to eliminate ant problems, typically a combination of sprays (to stop the ants coming inside) and baits (to actually kill the nest).  Indoor ant problems can generally be completely eliminated. However, it can be difficult to get lasting control from outdoor ant problems as after a while they will re-invade from surrounding areas.

Birds nesting in and around homes and businesses can cause a nuisance – not only do their droppings make a mess and damage buildings, but they carry diseases and parasites… and can make a lot of noise!

The main pest bird in Adelaide is the pigeon – the “rat of the sky” – but sparrows, starlings and seagulls cause problems too.  For homeowners, birds aren’t just a noise nuisance and health risk, bird droppings can cause significant damage to solar panels. Apart from decreasing electrical output (the droppings block the sun), they can actually corrode materials in the panels. Asking your pest professional to bird proof solar panels is a worthwhile investment.

Cockroaches are everywhere in Adelaide. The large cockroach species (such as the American cockroach and Australian cockroach) are mainly a problem in the warmer months and generally live outside, under houses, in drains and rubbish. The small cockroach species, mainly the German cockroach are a problem all year round as they only live inside, most commonly in kitchens.

Pest Control treatments for large cockroach species involve spraying the outside of the building (to prevent them entering), garden beds and garbage bins, as well as blowing insecticide dust into roof voids and sub-floors. For German cockroaches, the main treatment involves the use of cockroach baits. When using baits, it may take several days to reduce the population and with German cockroach treatments, more than one visit may be necessary to eliminate the problem.

With cockroach problems, ensuring good housekeeping / hygiene is essential for eliminating and prevent cockroach infestations.

Fleas are a decreasing problem in Adelaide. Fleas tend to struggle a bit in the dry Adelaide climate and coupled with the development of excellent on pet flea treatments. However, if you do suffer the misfortune a flea infestation a professional flea treatment is the only way to get on top of the infestation quickly and completely eliminate the problem. “Flea bombs” from supermarkets will provide temporary relief in treated rooms, but to eliminate the infestation all your pet’s resting areas, inside and outside the home needs to be treatment with an effective and safe product.

Like the rest of Australia, during the warmer month, flies are everywhere in Adelaide. The main types of flies are filth flies, which include the common house fly. And often a large number of bush flies will come in on the winds from the outback. They are called filth flies as they breed in rubbish, rotten food and faeces. So, to minimise fly problems it’s a good idea to pick up pet poo and prevent flies having access to garbage. A professional fly treatment will target fly breeding spots and also spray walls of buildings where the flies are likely to rest.


Homes and business can also suffer problems with small indoor flies – drain flies and vinegar flies. They can be very difficult to eliminate as they can breed in the smallest of food sources (1 cm and smaller!). So it’s important to find all the breeding sites and carry out a thorough clean of the area as part of the treatment. A good pest manager will be able to find all the likely breeding spots before treating, to ensure you completely eliminate the problem.

Adelaide homes can suffer severe invasions of the Portuguese millipede. The main millipede season is Autumn, which is when they breed. They can appear in their thousands, typically after rain. The can sometimes be a secondary millipede invasion when the young millipedes emerge in Spring when the weather warms up. If you know you can suffer millipede problems in your area, keep lights to a minimum around the house and use thick blinds and curtains – Portuguese millipedes are attracted to the light. A professional perimeter treatment to the exterior of the building and surround garden beds will kill the millipedes and help stop them entering the building.

Mosquito problems in Adelaide are less common than the wetter East coast, due to the drier climate. For those living near permanent bodies of water and tidal areas (saltwater mosquito), mosquitoes will be a common Summer problem. For the rest of Adelaide, mosquito problems are closely correlated with the weather patterns – 2 weeks after significant rainfall, there’s likely to be a mosquito explosion.  

As most mosquito species don’t fly far from their breeding sites, the key to keeping numbers down at your property is to eliminate mosquito breeding sites – areas of resting water – plants pots, drains, gutters, etc. A professional pest treatment can help – they can fog your outdoor areas with insecticide to treat surfaces where mosquitoes land and rest. Although no treatment can deliver 100% control of mosquitoes, these fogging treatments can reduce the mosquito number significantly to allow you to enjoy your outdoor areas for several months.

Adelaide has three pest rodents – the house mouse, the roof rat and the Norway rat. Keeping rodents out the home and away from food is important as they carry a range of parasites and diseases, which they can transfer when they walk across surfaces, eat food and leave behind urine and droppings. They can also cause significant damage with their gnawing and are actually a major cause of house fires.

Although it is tempting to use baits from supermarkets, they are very toxic to humans, pets and non-target wildlife like possums. As such, it is always best to pay a professional pest manager to carry out the treatment to ensure the baits are placed in the best locations to deliver results and prevent accidental ingestion. Pest Professionals will use lockable bait stations in most areas.

Apart from the safety concerns, DIY treatments often fail as rodent control isn’t that easy. It is important to correctly identify the rodent species causing the problem as their unique behaviours influence the treatment program, particularly in determine choice of bait, placement of bait and amount of bait to use.


The house mouse is a common pest in Adelaide. Normally they will live outside in burrows in the undergrowth, although they become more of an issue during the cooler months when they come inside looking for warmth and shelter. They normally only travel a few metres from their shelter, so if you spot a mouse, you know its nest won’t be far away. Inside they will often nest in wall voids and inside furniture, cupboards and boxes. Mice are very curious creatures and will readily try new foods and eat bait.


There are two pest rats in Adelaide. The most common rat is the roof rat (or black rat). As its name suggests it will often nest in trees and roof voids and is an excellent climber. The less common Norway rat (or brown rat / sewer rat), is far larger and normally nests at ground level

Rats can be difficult to control due to their intelligence and the neophobic behaviour – they are frightened of new things, which can make it difficult to get them to accept rodent bait. Using a pest manager with rodent expertise will ensure you eliminate the rat problem as quickly as possible.

Common spiders in Perth include the black house spider, redback spider, white tail spider and Huntsman spider. Although the funnel web spiders are not present in Perth, there are a range of mouse spiders which look similar (and will also give a nasty bite).

Treatments for web-building spiders such as the black house spider and redback spider involve a “spider spray”, where the outside of the building, obvious webs and spider hiding places are sprayed. Sometimes insecticide dust may be blown into cracks and crevices. These treatments can be quite long lasting, typically 6 months or longer in protected areas.

These treatments can also control running or hunting spiders, such as white-tailed spiders and huntsman. It’s important to note, that if these spiders walk across treated surfaces, don’t necessarily die immediately and so one or two may still find their way into the house. However, the general spider treatment will kill insects and web building spiders which are the food for hunting spiders, making it far less attractive for hunting spiders to hand around.

Like many areas of Australia, termites are the number one threat to residential buildings. The chances of a termite attack is higher than flood, fire and natural disasters combined yet and termite damage is not covered by your home insurance. With 1 in 5 homes likely to suffer a termite attack at some point, having annual termite inspections are a must and installing a termite protection system is highly recommended.

The termite inspection is designed to detect any termite activity on your property and damage to the building. However, the recommendations in the termite inspection report around making your home less attractive to termites is critical. Especially recommendations around removing sources of moisture and heavily watered, dense garden beds around the perimeter of the home). Keeping the area around and under your home dry will significantly reduce the chances of a termite attack.

Like the rest of Australia, Adelaide has native paper wasps, but the dangerous European wasp is also a problem in Adelaide. Although the European wasp typically builds their nests in the ground, in embankments, around 20% of nests will be under eaves or in roof voids. As it’s a very aggressive wasp, with painful stings, eliminating European wasps is a job for the pest professional, as they have all the appropriate products and safety gear.

Weather in Adelaide and what it means for pests...

Adelaide has a pretty dry climate, although it does have more rain during winter than during the warmer months. Couple with the cooler temperatures during winter, Adelaide has quite defined pest seasons.  

Spring sees the start of the pest season, and as long as there has been a bit of winter rain, spiders are the first pest to appear. As we move into late Spring, cockroach numbers start to build up and by Summer and into Autumn, ants are often the main problem as their nests have reached maximum size.

Whereas flies can be a problem, due to the dry climate mosquitoes are generally not a regular problem in Adelaide. However, European wasps are a problem in Adelaide and need professional help for removal. Due to the relatively mild winters, wasp nests can grow year on year and develop into dangerous nests of tens of thousands of individuals.

After Autumn rains, millipede invasions can be a major issue for some homeowners.

Although they become less active during the cooler months, termites are a continuous threat and should be the number one concern for homeowners.

In the cooler winter months rodents indoors come inside looking for warmth and shelter – the “rodent season”.

Back to general information on pest control.